tv Weekend Early Start CNN November 18, 2012 7:00am-7:30am EST
with us. we've got a lot more on "cnn sunday morning." it starts right now. from cnn headquarters this is "cnn sunday morning." the chilling sounds of sirens followed by -- and even cnn crews are taking cover in the battle between israel and hamas. >> there's another attack, another rocket alert going on right now. we've got to get out of here. >> the death toll, troops all fliegz the middle east on what soon could become a ground war. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com good morning, everyone. i'm victor blackwell in for randi kaye. it's 7:00 on the east coast and 4:00 on the west. thanks for starting your morning with us. we're starting this hour in the middle east where civilians are
living in fear as israeli forces battle hamas militants across the border. for the past five days israel and hamas have fired rockets and bombed one another. israeli hair strikes have taken a heavy toll on civilians in gaza and so have hamas rockets hitting southern israel. there is, though, a hope for a slivg sliver of peace. they're trying to broker a cease-fire. this is what life is like for civilians on both sides. in israel they run for cover when those sirens sound. each siren is followed by an explosion. israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu spoke a short time ago. here's what he had to say. >> reporter: the israel defense forces have attacked more than 1,000 terror targets in the zba za strip and it continues at this very minute. it calls for significant blows
to israel and its operators who send them. we're exacting it and israel defense forces are prepared for a significant expansion of the operation. >> and in gaza the streets are relatively quiet. that's because people are afraid to go out for fear that another israeli air strike could hit at any time. cnn senior international correspondent sara sidner joins me live from gaza city. sara, we've talked a lot about the air strikes, but is it just the air strikes coming from the warplanes hitting this city? >> reporter: no. there are strikes coming from the israeli naval ships that are just off the coast of gaza. and as you know, gaza is just a strip along the mediterranean. last night we heard bang after bang. it was amazingly loud, loud enough to keep us up all night. we're standing outside down the street from our office because we cannot get to our office at this point in time. we're being told to stop because there's a building just behind me, and i'm going to move out of
my way so you can see it. you see that big building that's sand-colored? that's the official hamas television station and it was hit last night in a targeted air strooik. the journalists inside. several were hurt. one was hurt bad enough he may lose his leg. we have been told they were called. at some point the journalists inside, including some international journalists were told there was going to be an air strike and evacuate the building. most did evacuate, but because the air strike did not hit for four or five hours, some went back inside and they got hit and hurt when the air strike happened. we also had been to neighborhoods today where there are entire buildings collapsed on itself. pancaked. looks almost like an earthquake. and we also saw a family that wasn't hit directly by the bomb but the bomb landed right near them and it was so powerful, it
lifted up a huge chunk of the earth and dropped it on top of their home, killing two children and injured the father. victor? >> we're also hearing -- what we're hearing and what you see on your screen is what the television network is showing live right now that sara mentioned. they had been going after them and had been pretty successful. you talked about this television station. what else are they hitting? >> reporter: they're hitting all sorts of targets. mostly they've been going after the hamas government compound. so we know that the police headquarters, for example, was flattened. the compound where the head of the hamas headquarters exists, that was hit really hard. we also have seen ourselves several rockets. in fact, just to the right of us, there were four rockets that went up loud enough to make us duck. we saw rockets also in the area where we were, where the building was flattened, a
three-story apartment building where the families lived. again, some were told the air strike was coming and evacuated. some didn't get the call, didn't leave, and they ended up being injured. israel saying that they're looking to just do targeted air strikes. very specific spots. but as you know in this densely populated city, the civilians are getting caught in this crossfire. it's been a very, very tense time for the civilians in gaza. for them, it feels like war here. victor? >> sara sidner for us there. hamas puts that number at 900. it's a constant threat for the israeli people. our fred pleitgen joining us live from israel. fred, you've had to take coverage several times. we've seen it live on our end, on cnn international. how is israel trying to protect itself citizens? >> reporter: one of the main ways to try to protect is
actually behind me. it's a missile interception system, victor, called the iron dome. i can tell you a couple minutes ago, the iron dome, not this particular one but another, there was a barrage of missiles fired out of gaza literally about three minutes before we went on air, and i would say at least 12 to 15 of them were picked off by the iron dome intercepter system. so clear let's something that works very efficiently. of course, however, it's not efficient enough because there have been hits throughout the territory in ashkelon where we were. we were actually on the scene of where one of those rockets impact. it was in a rez denl chal area. one woman was in her house as the rocket impacted into her carport. luckily she was in the shelter, but certainly it is something that's taking a heavy toll on the lives of ordinary citizens here in israel. of course, a lot of them stay in their houses for the better part of the day. whenever they do have to leave, they plan very care employ to make sure they have shelter
along the way. i can tell you tornado's been a particularly bad day where we ours have had to go into hardened shelters and we've had to hit the deck here simply because there've been so many rockets fired out of gaza. >> we know the iron dome has been quite successful, but there have been a large number of the rockets that have been successful. you say 350e789 stay inside, schools closed, businesses shut down. this has kind of paralyzed the city of ashkelon? >> reporter: the thing is about this and others around the area, they have sort of a routine of dealing with all this, as bad as they may sound. they get rocket alarms even during the best of times. of course, it's something that's increasing and paralyzing marina life. people go there especially on weekends to have their beer and hang out and it was absolutely
empty. there was no one there. so it's taking a big toll on businesses. also a lot of people who have chirp, very worried about their families, keeping their children inside. and it is something, especially for the little ones, a very, very traumatizing experience. yes, these people are used to dealing with things like that but right now it's a special situation. dire situation. people we talk to here say they're very much in favor of the military operation going on but, of course, they want it all to end. >> even rocket fire in the best of times. fred pleitgen, thank you very much. are you skeptical of the fiscal cliff ending? if so, you're not alone. we'll explain next. often for le. that's one smart board. what else does it do, reverse gravity? [ laughs ] [ laughs ] [ whooshing ] tell me about it.
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let's move now from the middle east to far east. that's where president obama is right now. he's in thailand with the first stop on a three-country tour that includes myanmar and cambodia. he'll talk about the spread of democracy in the region. he's already met with thailand's king today. he's there with secretary of state hill rary clinton as wells
thailand's minister yingluck shinawatra. of course, we'll take you to that live when it happens. a victim of the safeway shooting in tucson, arizona, last january won a tight race for congress yesterday. [ chanting ] >> that's democrat ron barber. he was gabby giffords's aide when a gunman tried to assassinate her. he was elected to term. he beat. 1,400 votes was the margin. with his win democrats have a net gain of six seats in the house. republican senator marco rubio arrived in ohio. you know what that means. some speculation is an early visit for a possible 2016 run for the white house. rubio joined he would never run
for offensive coordinator for iowa and he also addressed the fiscal cliff. >> you heard about the fiscal cliff. i don't know if you've heard of that. you know who made that? congress made that. dramatic cuts in spending at the exact same time that all these exact taxes expire, at the same exact moment that the spending goes down in a controlled way. that wasn't an accident. congress chose na. >> rubio is considered a rising star and a gop favorite. talk about the fiscal cliff, the u.s. is a month and a half away from going over this so-called fiscal cliff and negotiations have begun, but voters are skeptical that a deal will be reached before the end of the year. here's political correspondent
paul steinhauser. >> good morning. >> i think we're all aware that we have some urgent business to do. >> the president, as he sat down at the white house friday with top congressional leaders from both parties. americans agree. more than 82% say it's extremely important for congress to reach a deal. >> our challenge is to make sure that, you know, we are able to cooperate together. >> and i believe that we can do this and avert the fiscal cliff that is right in front of us today. >> and that's what most people want they should vote to equally compromise to prevent tax cuts and hikes to start to kick in at the beginning of the year. what do they want? 45% say it should be about half spending cuts and half tax increases with about 40% saying it should be mostly or only spending cuts. and according to exit polls from
election night more than half said raising taxes on we wealthy americans is okay. it may be the biggest sticking point in reaching a deal. >> what i'm not going to do is extend bush tax cut for the wealthiest 2% that we can't afford and according to economists will have the least. >> we're in it not because we tax too little but we spend too much. >> these why many think congress will fail to hand out an agreement. who gets the blame? more than half say fingers will be pointed at congressional republicans with one in three saying it's the president's fault. victor? >> thanks. rolling stone calls it legendary. what they said about her cancer diagnosis. it didn't just help her deal. it changed her life. a conversation with a come
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furthermore we agree that thailand is in a strategic location and they have asean activities. we will work together to make it an entity of growth, contributing toward global economic and sustenance. within this context i inform the president that thailand will initiate negotiations on the tpp. we'll undertake the necessary domestic legislative process to make it become reality. the president and i had a discussion about regional issues and i welcome his upcoming historical visit with myanmar and cambodia.
we'll bring our forecasts on southeast asia and believe we can help contribute to regional peace, securities, and prosperi prosperities. but our cooperation goes beyond the regions. at the global railroad, thailand is concerned with the threat of weapon of mass destruction, there, i informed the president the thailand will join the security initiative of psi. we believe that psi will help to end wmd from following into the wrong hands which is in the shared interests of all. the president and i also discussed on how to tackle transnation crimes and in particular human trafficking.
i reaffirm my commitment to fight human trafficking which is equal to modern celebrity. we also discuss on combatting terrorisms and how to deal with the issue, especially in the term of disaster releechl finally, we recognize the importance of continual high-level exchange and consultation between our two countri countries. the president and i agree to stay in close touch and to have our minister and agency to do the same. that's what we discussed today. thank you. >> thank you very much. the honorable president barack obama to say a few woods. >> thank you very much. good teechk the people of thailand who have welcomed me so
graciously, let me say sol sola bekop. i will say the prime minister's english is much better than my thai. but i want to say thank you so much, madam prime minister, for your generous welcome and warm words and sense of partnership you bring to our work today. as you indicated, asia is my first foreign trip since our election in the united states, and thailand is my first stop. and this is no accident. as i've said many times, the united states is and also will be a pacific nation, as the fastest growing region in the world, the asia past look change so much in our security and prosperity ahead and it's critical to creating jobs for our american people and that's why've made rye storing american engagement in this region a top priority as president.
and the corner stone of our strategy is our strong and enduring treaty alliances, which includes our alliance with thailand. thailand is america's oldest friend in asia. next year will mark 180 years of diplomatic relations. we've been treaty allies committed to our common defense for nearly 60 years. our men and women in uniform have stood together and they've bled together. our business people and our entrepreneurs work together to create jobs for both of our peoples. our diplomats, development experts, researchers, and student partners every day work together so that our citizens and people across this region can live in piece and security and dignity. most recently the people of thailand have worked to restore and strengthen your own democracy, and we are very admiring of the efforts that
have been made. earlier today i had the great honor of having an audience before his majesty, the king. a lead over wisdom and dignity who embodies the identity and unity of this nation. and today i'm proud to stand beside the democratically elected leader of thailand and to reaffirm the importance of upholding democracy, governance, rule of law, and universal human rights, all of which i know, madam prime minister, that you believe in very deeply. when we met in bali last year, the prime minister and i discussed how we would deepen and broaden the partnership between our countries, and with this visit, i'm belized that we've agreed to a series of efforts that revitalize our alliance to meet the challenges and opportunities of our time. first, we're deepening our security cooperation, our militaries already train and
exercise together and are close partners in preventing terrorism and preventing narco trafficking. now we have a broader alliance. we're going to improve our operatives together. strengthen ties in the region from maritime to disaster relief to deterring piracy. taken together these steps advance our secure and peaceful asian past wrk the rights and responsibilities of all nations are up held. second, we're taking new steps to expand trade and investment. the united states is already one of thailand's biggest trading partners, and we're already one of the biggest investors in thailand. but we believe we can do even more. so we've agreed to reconvene our trade and investment in counsel to explore new ways that our
countries and entrepreneurs can continue to do business together. we'll continue to work with our apec partners and move toward a seamless regional economy and we'll work together ads thailand works to lay the ground work for high standing trade agreement such as the tran sends partnership. all of this will advance our position of a region where a trade is free and fair and all nations play by the rules. third, on this 50th anniversary of the peace corps in thailand, we're moving ahead with new partnerships to move with human development and dignity. we'll focus on public health, develop a vaccine for hiv/aids and ensuring that development is sustainable, especially in regions along the macon river. i recently anoujsed new steps the united states is taking to confront the scourge of trafficking, modern slavery. thailand is also taking steps
including measures to better protect and empower women and girls and i'm very pleased to see the leadership that the prime minister has taken on what i think we all agree is a very important issue. and given thailand's role as an emerging donor country, i'm very pleased they'll be working more closely to develop in other countries including fighting malaria along the thai/burma border. we also welcome, by the way, the leadership thailand has taken in protecting thailand around the world. it's something that thailand slould be very proud of. finally we discussed a range of regional challenges. thailand has supported the cause of democracy in burma, protecting dissidents, hosting refugees, and promoting reform, and i very much appreciate the prime minister's insights as i prepare to visit burma tomorrow. as a member of asean, thailand